More than 445 days in lockdown

For those of you who do not know us James was war blinded (A St Dunstan’s beneficiary). I have a physical disability that affects my ability to walk. I like to say I do the wobble dance. We have been in a relationship for over 30 years We have not been out since March 2020. That is more than 445 days with more to come.

Often when we tell people we haven’t been out they think we mean we haven’t been out except for shopping etc. I mean we have not been out our gate. I went with James once to look at the water metre. James puts out the trash every two weeks. Fortunately, we stay in an area where everybody delivers. 

We have been doing online shopping for years. Even before Covid. Like most ladies I really enjoy retail therapy (shopping) but I can’t be using my limited energy on buying the boring necessities: washing powder, milk etc. If I’m going to walk let it be a slow stroll passed the good stuff, chocolates etc. Oh, the joy of shopping at Woolworths with the click of a mouse in the comfort of our home.

We have always found that humour is a positive way of coping. So let me share two of my online shopping blunders. I enjoy Willards cheese curls. I thought I was buying 4 X4 that is 16 packets instead I got 4X4X25 that is 400 packets. I also ordered Sambuca and instead of getting one bottle I got 1X6. Those of you who like liquorice I can recommend Sambuca and lemonade in a tall glass.

I learnt young that physically we all have limitations. The great thing is that while your body can only be in one place, you can take your mind anywhere you want to. Let me share a personal example. Before I retired, I worked for a Chinese company. In the Chinese culture it is considered powerful and acceptable to shout at colleagues at work. I felt uncomfortable at work when people shouted at me or at others. So, I just took my mind somewhere else. One of my favourite places to go in my mind is to drink cocktails with James in Mauritius. We have been blessed to enjoy some spectacular holidays.

Remember it is ok to:

  • Avoid the news.
  • Feel upset that you are missing out on things you were looking forward to.
  • Wish things would go back to normal.
  • Miss your family and friends.
  • Recognize your mental health is being negatively impacted.
  • Feel sad you can’t go out.


Things I miss and how I’ve adapted

One of the things I really enjoy is eating drinking and being merry with family and friends. I have increased my email, telephone, and SMS buddies. During covid I have discovered zoom. Ironic that I have seen some overseas friends and family and not people down the road.

I miss the sea; it is good for my soul. Google and technology are my new best friends. Google has loads of great videos of the sea that I watch on my laptop.

I miss getting my haircut, so now I cut my fringe regularly and James has cut the back of my hair once. He has been cutting his own hair for years. He did a good job of cutting the back of mine. Like all things the more I practise the better I get.

Things that have helped me when things seem tough

When I feel negative, angry etc I allow myself to feel that. In my experience if I want to get over any negative feeling, I need to first acknowledge it. Then I try to do something to distract myself. Watch a movie, listen to music etc. Do something that makes my heart smile.

I can take my mind anywhere I want to. When my mind or emotions start going to negative places I try and bring them back and take them to a happy place.

I am mindful of how blessed I am. I have a lot to be thankful for. I try and focus more on what I have and what I can do, rather than on what I cannot do or don’t have.

It seems fitting to end with two of my favourite lockdown jokes.

Being quarantined with a 3-year-old is like having an insane parrot glued to your shoulder.

I never thought the comment “I wouldn’t touch them with a six-foot pole” would become a national policy, but here we are!